Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 06 Hansard (Tuesday, 7 June 2022) . . Page.. 1715 ..
Amendments agreed to.
Clause 16, as amended, agreed to.
Remainder of bill, by leave, taken as a whole and agreed to.
Bill, as amended, agreed to.
Sitting suspended from 11.57 am to 2.00 pm.
MR BARR (Kurrajong—Chief Minister, Treasurer, Minister for Climate Action, Minister for Economic Development and Minister for Tourism) (2.00): Minister Vassarotti is again not present in question time due to quarantine. Mr Gentleman will assist with questions in the building and environment space and the Deputy Chief Minister will assist with housing and homelessness.
Questions without notice
Canberra Institute of Technology—procurement
MS LEE: Madam Speaker, my question is to the Minister for Skills. Minister, today it was reported that there have been seven questionable contracts at CIT and that one individual has received a total of at least $8.87 million since 2017, mainly to provide mentoring services to the CEO. Minister, $7.21 million worth of these contracts have been signed since you have held the portfolio. The latest is valued at just under $5 million, or almost $10,000 per day for two years. Minister, on what date were you first made aware of this series of questionable procurements?
MR STEEL: I became aware of the latest contract that was signed and put up on the contracts register yesterday. I have also been aware of some other contracts that have been signed between the individual and a series of affiliated companies since as early as last year, when I also raised some concerns with and asked some questions of the CIT board.
It is important to note that CIT operates under a governing board and executive external to government, in line with the Canberra Institute of Technology Act 1987. So the release and negotiation of external contracts are matters for the CIT board and executive. As I said, the government was only informed of this latest contract yesterday.
MS LEE: Minister, what advice did you receive when you asked those questions of the CIT board, and will you table that advice?
MR STEEL: Some detailed information was provided to me in relation to the earlier set of contracts. We expect that the CIT uses public funding efficiently and effectively. I have also written to the chair of the CIT board to ask for a detailed explanation of the latest contract and require that information to be provided to government within five working days. Those questions will be around the quantum of the funding and its efficient use and what the deliverables will be for this large contract that has been provided.